- Wednesday, 29 October 2014

What is love anyway..?

I touched on this briefly in an earlier article but I think I feel it is necessary to expand on this a bit...What is love? Because all the films are telling us it's our prince charming coming along and saving the day, but the modern woman doesn't need a man to sweep them off of their feet, do they? And this prince charming theory very much relies on the certainty of the male that he is in love and so how do THEY know? I'm fairly sure that most women are happier not to have to rely on a guy to solve their problems. And I know whilst everyone likes to feel supported, having the responsibility for our own lives regardless of gender is somewhat freeing. 

But when it comes to love, who is there to decide when it is REALLY love? Who has the power to look at a couple and tell them they aren't really in love, they are in lust, or they are young and niave... How are we supposed to know what love is? And when it is real?

And what does it mean to be 'in love'? Is love that butterflies feeling? Finding someone we are comfortable with? Or is it just a chemical process? So obviously I have a lot of questions about this.

Apparently scientists have suggested it takes between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to decide whether or not you like someone, most of which is to do with the body language of the other person…

Here is what Professor Arthur Arun has to say about what makes people fall in love...

There are 3 stages of love: lust, attraction and attachment. 

Stage 1:

When we see someone of the opposite sex our body releases sex hormones - testosterone and oestrogen - it is in our nature to want to reproduce as we need to keep the human race going and so we develop 'lust'.

Let´s try this...

Did you feel the testosterone and oestrogen coming up??

Stage 2:

Attraction depends on three main hormones: adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin. 

Adrenaline is responsible for that stomach-in-your-mouth-don't-know-whether-to-throw-up-or-die-laughing feeling you get when you see your new love. This is your stress response, your heart beats faster, blood pressure rises and you feel like you are having some minor heart attack.

Dopamine gives you a high that is has the same effect on the brain as taking cocaine (maybe love really is a drug?) So you feel wonderful.

Serotonin which makes you unable to stop thinking about your new infatuation…

Overall stage two it sounds like a pretty rough experience…some sort of brainwashing series that makes you want to have people's babies and get serious like crazy (if you get the reference then well done).

Stage 3:
The final stage is when you create a bond with someone that develops over time and stay together long enough to ensure you have babies! Scientists believe the two hormones involved in the final stage are oxytocin and vasopressin.
Oxytocin is something we have touched upon before, the love hormone, it is released during orgasm (the big 'O' obviously stands for oxytocin) and deepens the connection between the couple. Oxytocin interestingly is also thought to bring out the paternal/maternal side in people.
Vasopressin is released after sex (and we wonder why everything comes back to sex in the end) and is thought to increase devotion between partners by encouraging a need to protect them.

So we are technically (according to science) in love when we want to stay with someone and have their babies - in stage 3. Kind of like some creepy evolutionary programming rather than the head-over-heels romance we all saw in Aladdin. Great film. Great soundtrack.

What do you think means you are in love?

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Thanks for reading, share your thoughts! 

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